CHICAGO - State Treasurer and GOP gubernatorial candidate Dan Rutherford announced today that he's launching an independent investigation into unspecified allegations made against him by a current employee in the treasurer's office.
At a press conference in Chicago Rutherford said, "Let me make this very clear, there is absolutely no truth to the allegations. No factual support or merit."
Rutherford contends his primary opponent Bruce Rauner is behind the accusations, and what seems to be an attempt at blackmail.
"Christine Svenson is an attorney making demands on behalf of the accuser and is directly linked to my opponent Bruce Rauner," Rutherford said. "Svenson demanded payment of $300,000 dollars for the employee to 'walk away and keep it under wraps.'"
It has been reported that Rauner has been quoted as saying he has "book on all the Republican candidates" and he's going to "destroy every one of them."
Discussion about the Rauner campaign preparing to use personal information against Rutherford has been going on for a while. Sources tell Illinois Review the Rauner team may have finally pulled the trigger in order to take the media focus off Rauner, and to weaken Rutherford who has amassed the largest campaign war chest after Rauner and is preparing to launch television ads in February.
“I’m going to turn this back on him,” Rutherford said. “I find this to be very, very offensive... No one, including Bruce Rauner, is going to destroy me.”
The Treasurer's Office has retained Ron Braver and Associates. Neil Olson, General Counsel of the Illinois Treasurer's Office, says Braver has twenty-five years of law enforcement experience and is proven in tough investigations. "Ron Braver will conduct a thorough investigation and will provide a swift and comprehensive report which will reflect all aspects of his findings."